'I declined rapidly' - Dan Burn's 'goldfish bowl' Newcastle United verdict amid transfer links
The towering defender was a boyhood Magpies fan.
The Toon Army have been on a well-documented hunt for a new centre-back this January, with Eddie Howe eager to strengthen his backline ahead of a looming relegation battle.
Several players have been linked with in recent, but as per Football Insider, 6’7” Albion star Burn is the latest to catch the Magpies’ attention.
Burn, who can also play at left-back, was born in Blyth and formerly held a season ticket at St. James’ Park while also featuring for the club's academy setup.
The defender has 18 months left on his contract on the south coast, and it is claimed that Howe and his recruitment team are keen to lure him back to the North East before the transfer window shuts next week.
What has Burn said about Newcastle?
Reflecting on his time with Newcastle ahead of a clash between the Toon Army and Brighton in July 2020, the 29-year-old said: “I was playing for Blyth Spartans as a junior, and was scouted by Newcastle United and invited to join their development centre.
"You have the Academy, where the best players went, and the development centre would run alongside that, where you would train Fridays, and they kept an eye on the players’ progress.
"It wasn’t that great to be honest. While I was a good footballer when I joined them, as the two or three years went on, I declined quite rapidly. My body shot up, and I didn’t really catch up with myself football-wise until I was 15 or 16.”
He added: “I was there (at Newcastle) from 11 to 13, but don’t remember much of my time, maybe I’ve blocked a lot of it out, because it wasn’t a particularly good experience being let go by the club you support, with the realisation setting in that you’re probably not good enough to play at that level.
"I got released around Christmas time too, and it knocked my confidence.
"For a good couple of years. It wasn’t until I started growing into my body again that I started enjoying my football once more. I then kicked on and eventually got my league chance when I joined Darlington.”
Burn also spoke of his support for the Toon Army.
He said: “Coming from the town of Blyth, everyone’s a Newcastle supporter, so you’re born into it.
“My dad had a season-ticket, a real diehard fan, and he signed me up to the Junior Magpies club early.
"I started playing football when I was six or seven, so got more into it more and then my dad would eventually start taking me to loads of games.
"I eventually had my own season-ticket and the years I remember most from my childhood was when the club played in the Champions League – they were great times for the club.”
Burn had the chance to return to Newcastle, aged 18, in 2011 when Alan Pardew was manager, but instead opted to join Fulham.
Opening up on the decision to snub the Magpies, he said: “When I signed for Fulham, I was actually given the opportunity to go t Newcastle as well.
“I would have loved to play for Newcastle, but, at that age, at that time in my career, it was the best decision for me to get away from that goldfish bowl where everyone’s analysing what you’re doing.
"I just wanted to get away and solely concentrate on my football, which was the correct decision.”